Editor’s Note: McKnight’s Senior Living and McKnight’s Long-Term Care News are profiling the McKnight’s 2021 Women of Distinction honorees daily July 6 through Aug. 9. To see the 2021 McKnight’s 2021 Women of Distinction awards ceremony, register for free here. For additional profiles of McKnight’s Women of Distinction, visit this page.
Teresa Chopoorian has been exposed to the nursing profession since she was a teenager. Having worked alongside her parents in her family’s business, the 76-bed Mansion Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Central Falls, RI, she knew early on that she wanted to pursue a career in nursing. Today she is vice president and administrator there.
Chopoorian’s professional career in nursing began after graduating from the Nursing School of Rhode Island in 1962. She started as a staff nurse at the Children’s Hospital Medical Center in Boston. Knowing that she wanted to advance her knowledge of nursing practice as well as her career, she pursued her master’s degree at the Boston School of Nursing, which she earned in 1964. At Boston University, she became an assistant professor and in 1968 received a nursing educator of the year award.
Chopoorian’s passion for developing the nursing profession through academia next led her to Boston College, where she accepted a professorship and agreed to co-direct the Macy Foundation graduate program with Harvard Medical School in 1970. The foundation’s program was one of the first nurse practitioner programs in the country, setting the standard nationwide for the nurse practitioner curriculum.
Chopoorian received perhaps her most prestigious recognition for her scholarship and achievement in 1978, when she was selected as the 9th recipient of the International Council of Nursing Fellowship, the first U.S. candidate to ever receive the award.
In 1983, she accepted a professorship at Northeastern University in Boston and continued to develop the nursing practice and to teach.
In 1986, in the aftermath of her mother passing away and her father retiring as an administrator, Chopoorian left the world of nursing academia to take on the role of leading the nursing facility in her family’s business. Despite the challenges that came with adjusting to the business environment and leaving the career she had built for herself, she made a smooth transition into her new role and has secured a consistent 4-star rating for the facility.
In 1987, she was appointed a fellow in the National Academies of Practice, in nursing, and in the same year, she earned the Nightingale Nurse of the Year Award, an award bestowed by the Rhode Island State Nurses Association to an individual who demonstrates excellence in nursing practice or leadership.
As the administrator at Mansion, Chopoorian continues to put her knowledge of the profession into practice by leading the facility and enacting systems and practices that ensure exceptional care for residents.
The McKnight’s Women of Distinction program is jointly administered by McKnight’s Senior Living and McKnight’s Long-Term Care News. The program’s Diamond sponsor is PointClickCare, and the Roundtable Sponsor is Paycor.